NORFOLK, Va. - Spinning records behind his turntable is his passion, and this Christmas, Derrick Isabell, better known as Izzy The DJ, is using his talent to give back.
“I’m blessed to be in a position that I am right now, so why not be a blessing to others,” Isabell said.
The 29-year old Norfolk resident teamed up with nonprofit The CROP Foundation to hold a holiday extravaganza unlike any other.
This Tuesday, December 22, the disc jockey will be streaming live, mixing songs for 24 hours straight right from his living room.
“It’s definitely going to be fun,” Isabell said. “It’s challenging. I’ve never DJ’d for 24 straight hours before. Every two hours I’ll switch the genre of music, or whatever I’m playing just to make it fun.”
The goal is to raise money for two local families that have fallen on hard times during this challenging year.
“Nobody wants to feel stressed and worried about finances,” said Isabell.
Isabell is no stranger to using his platform to help others, whether it’s being a mentor to little ones, setting up scholarship funds for students or raising money for families in need.
During last year’s holiday fundraising event, $2,000 was raised for Patricia and her family.
The COVID-19 crisis humbled the DJ even more when his fans came out to support him at the start of the pandemic when live events were put on pause. During the lockdown in March, Isabell DJ’d out of his home.
“For me, I had to adapt and had to go virtual a lot,” said Isabell. “I was just doing it for fun, then people started blessing me out of the woodwork.”
That generosity motivated Isabell to give back and continue his holiday gala event through the pandemic but instead of holding it in-person, it’ll be virtual.
“Things like that that happened to me are more reason for events like this fundraiser and why it means so much to me because I am so blessed even in the darkest hour,” Isabell said. “There’s always going to be a light at the end of the tunnel.”
Isabell’s virtual fundraiser ‘Up All Night’ kicks off Tuesday at 1 p.m. and goes until 1 p.m. Wednesday. The 24-hour live event will be streaming via Isabell’s Instagram @izzythedj and on his Facebook page.
The deadline to nominate a family is Dec. 21. at 8 p.m. To send nominations, click here.
The two selected families will be announced at the conclusion of the event
Izzy the DJ told News 3 Monday that the fundraiser helped raise approximately $8,000.